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Have you ever wondered how incredibly small we are?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Ívar Þórólfsson, Nov 26, 2003.

  1. Ívar Þórólfsson

    Ívar Þórólfsson Mmmmmm... Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2001
    Kopavogur, Iceland
    In light of recent news of solar flares and such, I was browsing the net and I found a page which has got some pretty cool pics of the sun.

    I found two pictures which I combined to get the right scale of the earth vs. the sun.

    Well, according to that page this scale should be right.


    We be small!

    Even that "little" flare on the lower left corner would easily wipe the earth out of existance if theoratically we were able to be that close.
    (which is not possible, I know!)

    Here´s the link!

  2. Oysterman


    Mar 30, 2000
    And our sun is far from being one of the larger stars in the universe.
  3. Ívar Þórólfsson

    Ívar Þórólfsson Mmmmmm... Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2001
    Kopavogur, Iceland
  4. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Not only are we small compared to the sun, but think about the size of the UNIVERSE!
  5. Aaron


    Jun 2, 2001
    Bellingham, WA
    I'm just glad I don't live on Uranus.

    It just expels too many gases.

    (someone had to say it)
  6. Ívar Þórólfsson

    Ívar Þórólfsson Mmmmmm... Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2001
    Kopavogur, Iceland

    I decided to put this picture because we can releate much better to the size of the sun.

    I remember reading somewhere that if the whole universe would be the size of our earth (theoratically), the earth itself would only be a tiny speck of sand on it.

    Puts things in perspective doesn´t it.
  7. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    The next thing to realize is that our life, our species, doesnt serve a purpose. If we were in the Matrix, we'd be deleted..
  8. Nick Gann

    Nick Gann Talkbass' Tubist in Residence

    Mar 24, 2002
    Silver Spring, MD
    I forgot who said it, and I know this isn't how it really goes, but let me give it a shot:

    Assuming there are an infinite number of stars in the universe, and if one star has one planet, then there is also an infinite number of planets.

    Now, there are only 6 billion humans in the world (give or take). If there are 6 billion people on our one planet, and our planet is the only one with known life, then that is one planet with life.

    If one planet out of an infinite number of planets has life, then the proportion is 1:infinity.


    Mathematically, we don't exist :meh:
  9. Aaron


    Jun 2, 2001
    Bellingham, WA
    Using that logic, that means we either don't exist or there is a finite amount of stars in the universe, meaning you better locate some land and claim it while you still can.

    But since it is a ratio of 1:infinity, wouldn't the fraction be 1/(infinity+1), since the part itself would have to be included in the whole? And why would it equal 0? (I stopped taking math, :oops: ) Wouldn't it be undefined?
  10. Nick Gann

    Nick Gann Talkbass' Tubist in Residence

    Mar 24, 2002
    Silver Spring, MD

  11. canopener


    Sep 15, 2003
    Isle of Lucy
  12. Nick Gann

    Nick Gann Talkbass' Tubist in Residence

    Mar 24, 2002
    Silver Spring, MD
    X/0 = undefined

    X/infinity = 0

    From what I learned anyways...

    But hey, even if you are correct, that still prooves my point. That would mean we are undefined.

    Anyways, back to the thread and away from the math lesson....
  13. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    But then you have the infinitessimals. It's all a matter of orders of magnitude. We are comparably large when considering a quark, for instance.

    I've contemplated the variation of scale in the universe quite a bit. Sometimes, if I think about it too hard, I weird out and get a very odd perspective of things. (No, not on dope.) It's almost as though the universe, all things known and unknown, is a phenomenally large and complex machine. For you god-seeking types, it also seems like an unimaginably expansive intellect. Go figure.
  14. geshel


    Oct 2, 2001
    My big-headed calc prof would be growling and showing his teeth about now! :eek: :D Infinity is not a number.

    atomic nucleus: 1 x 10^-15 m
    you: 1 or 2 m
    Earth: 8 x 10^6 m
    Pluto's orbit (both directions): 12 x 10^12 m
    Distance to nearest star: 4.2 x 10^16 m
    Distance to nearest galaxy: 2.3 x 10^22 m

    So, roughly: if the Earth was the size of an atomic nucleus, Andromeda would be 8000 km away from it (and the size of Washington State). The observed Universe would be about 45 times the size of the Sun.
  15. geshel


    Oct 2, 2001
    The funny thing is, it's not too big for numbers. Maybe. :D For a while anyway, scientists estimated there were something like 10^86 subatomic particles in the universe. Give or take a pretty big number - but still, just being able to put a ballpark number on it! Lately I've heard they think the universe might really be infinite - I like "finite but bounded" better, but anyway that might change their estimates (the mass couldn't be infinite as well, I don't think).
  16. This is a very neat photograph, and a short description of how it was taken. It really puts things quite nicely into perspective, IMO.

  17. Wooo pictures! :p


  18. Yeah, but I know I exist, and I also know that you exist since if you were a figment of my imagination you wouldn't be posting daft mathematics to a fairly pointless bulletin board. :D

    Maths is bunk... Says the statistician. ;)
  19. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Of course all these 'big' things are in fact very simple structures - whereas the most complex self-contained single structure we know about is the human brain.

    How about contemplating the fact that we can imagine all this hugeness - within our little brains!! ;)
  20. Speak for yourself Bruce, I have no way of contemplating how HUGE everything else is. I'm a bear of little brain .

    "Space is big. Very big. You think it's a long way to the chemists on the corner, but that's peanuts compared to space. Listen...."

    Douglas Adams - R.I.P.

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